Category Archives: Science

HOW BUILDING A SET OF STEPS ILLUSTRATES “A FUNDAMENTAL PROPERTY OF THE UNIVERSE”.

HOW BUILDING A SET OF STEPS ILLUSTRATES “A FUNDAMENTAL PROPERTY OF THE UNIVERSE”. I think it’s worthwhile to emphasize by repetition the life lesson that John Salvatier draws from building a set of stairs. “It’s tempting to think ‘So what?’ … Continue reading

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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO BUILD A SET OF STEPS.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO BUILD A SET OF STEPS. One of Katja Grace’s initial observations is that: “Inventions are usually more ingenious than they seem”. She links to this blog post by John Salvatier, who supports the proposition … Continue reading

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SOME PROPOSED EXPLANATIONS FOR WHY IT TOO SO LONG TO INVENT ROPE.

SOME PROPOSED EXPLANATIONS FOR WHY IT TOOK SO LONG TO INVENT ROPE. Katja Grace received a large number of proposed answers to her question. She summarized them here three days after she posed it (link via Marginal Revolution). The first … Continue reading

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WHAT IF I HAD HAD TO INVENT ROPE?

WHAT IF I HAD HAD TO INVENT ROPE? I have said for years that if human progress had required that I invent rope or the wheel, it would never have happened. Technological progress has depended on people who are “handy”, … Continue reading

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WHY DID IT TAKE SO LONG TO INVENT ROPE?

WHY DID IT TAKE SO LONG TO INVENT ROPE? Katja Grace posed a great question here on her Meteuphoric blog (December 28, 2017): “One of the biggest intuitive mysteries to me is how humanity took so long to do anything. … Continue reading

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MAYBE THE APPENDIX IS USEFUL AFTER ALL.

MAYBE THE APPENDIX IS USEFUL AFTER ALL. Many of the things I learned in high school health classes fifty years ago now appear to be wrong. It may be I can add to that list the theory that the human … Continue reading

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ALGORITHMS SENDING TRAFFIC TO BUSY STREETS.

ALGORITHMS SENDING TRAFFIC TO BUSY STREETS. Rick Paulas describes here what is happening to traffic all around the country: “All that extra traffic down previously empty streets has created an odd situation in which cities are constantly playing defense against … Continue reading

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A COSMOLOGIST SAYS THAT ASTRONOMY IS “FAR SIMPLER” THAN THE BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES.

A COSMOLOGIST SAYS THAT ASTRONOMY IS “FAR SIMPLER” THAN THE BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES. For me, the discovery of the gravitational wave is an almost unbelievable achievement. In this essay on the Aeon site, Martin Rees looks at the discovery of a … Continue reading

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WHAT THE GRAVITATIONAL WAVE DISCOVERY CONFIRMED.

WHAT THE GRAVITATIONAL WAVE DISCOVERY CONFIRMED. Leah Crane in this post on the New Scientist blog lists what she considers the five biggest discoveries resulting from the discovery of the gravitational wave resulting from a neutron star merger. The fifth … Continue reading

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PLACING THE GRAVITATIONAL WAVE IN OUR TIME FRAME.

PLACING THE GRAVITATIONAL WAVE IN OUR TIME FRAME. Rebecca Boyle in a post on the FiveThirtyEight site (November 14, 2017) describes the way the gravitational wave I posted on here was perceived by scientists on August 17, 2017: “GW170817 [which … Continue reading

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